Wyden: Airlines to offer X gender option

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden
Press Release,

U.S. Senator Ron Wyden, D-Ore., commended domestic airlines for committing to offer a ticket option for nonbinary customers by 2024. In a letter to Airlines for America, which represents domestic carriers, he thanked them for the commitment, which came in response to inquiries by Wyden and LGBTQ+ advocates.

“The right to have documents and paperwork that reflect their identity is an essential protection for trans, nonbinary, and gender non-conforming Americans — whether issued by the Federal government or at the check-in counter,” Wyden wrote. “I appreciate Airlines for America’s willingness to work with me to ensure that Americans can fly free from gender-based discrimination.”

United and American Airlines offer X gender markers, but several airlines had not previously committed to updating their booking systems.

X gender markers allow individuals who do not identify as male or female to avoid having to choose an inaccurate gender category when obtaining identification or documents that sort people by gender. Oregon was the first state to allow X gender markers on driver’s licenses, in 2017. Currently 21 states and the District of Columbia allow residents to obtain birth certificates or identity cards with an X gender marker, and the State Department now offers an X gender option for passports.

The airlines also committed to publish a page on their websites detailing the specific steps that nonbinary individuals can take to obtain tickets that reflect their gender, such as working with a customer service representative who can manually update the gender marker on their ticket.

The full letter is here.

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